US military claims killing of 42 Taliban in Afghanistan

The US military claimed Wednesday that its forces killed 42 suspected Taliban militants in operations in Afghanistan, while a NATO soldier and a civilian were killed in other incidents. A coalition airstrike killed 23 suspected Taliban militants Wednesday in the Langar area of Tarin Kot, the provincial capital of the southern province of Uruzgan, after the militants attacked an Afghan and US-led coalition patrol in the area, the US military said in a statement.Also on Wednesday, nine other militants were killed in a separate clash between militants and Afghan-coalition forces in Lashkargah, the provincial capital of the southern province of Helmand, the military statement said.Southern provinces are the main hub for Taliban militants’ activity.Meanwhile, in the central province of Logar, US-led troops and Afghan forces killed “an estimated 10 insurgents” in the Baraki Barak district Tuesday, the US military said.Acting on intelligence that Taliban operatives were in the area, the combined forces engaged the militants near a targeted compound and inside the house, killing 10 rebels, it said.Two other militants were detained during the operation while rocket-propelled grenades and hand grenades were seized, it said.Logar province, which borders Kabul, has seen increased Taliban activity in the past year. More than 1,500 US troops were sent to the province in January to quell the insurgency there and prevent the rebels’ advance toward the capital.An Afghan civilian was shot dead by NATO-led troops near Kabul while an alliance soldier was killed in the south, officials said Wednesday.Soldiers in the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) killed the civilian Tuesday when he failed to stop at a checkpoint in the Sayed Abad district in the central province of Wardak despite several verbal and visual signals, an ISAF statement said. The man died later in hospital.Separately, an ISAF soldier was killed in southern Afghanistan Tuesday, the alliance said, but did not disclose the soldier’s nationality or cause of death.More than 70,000 international soldiers are stationed under the commands of the NATO-led ISAF and US-led coalition forces in Afghanistan